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How Does Bankruptcy Affect Divorce? CLE Training

  • Bankruptcy
  • Family Law


Program fee: $50

Sponsored by the Social Law Library, Senior Partners for Justice, the Massachusetts Family and Probate American Inn of Court and the Greater Boston Family Law American Inn of Court

Judge Joan N. Feeney, United States Bankruptcy Court, (Program Chair)
Judge Katherine A. Field, Massachusetts Probate and Family Court
David B. Madoff, Esq., Madoff & Khoury LLP
Chief Judge Christopher J. Panos, United States Bankruptcy Court
Gary Owen Todd, Esq., Todd & Weld, LLP
Bankruptcy law and divorce law have never enjoyed an easy marriage with often irreconcilable differences between the objectives and procedures in bankruptcy cases and divorce proceedings.


Whether you are a family law practitioner in a divorce proceeding where there is a pending or possible bankruptcy, or you are a bankruptcy practitioner representing a debtor or joint debtors getting divorced, it is essential that you understand how bankruptcy law and family law differ and intersect. Both types of practitioners must be able to advise clients on how bankruptcy laws and procedures affect their rights and obligations in a divorce and how divorce proceedings may affect a bankruptcy case.

Two United States Bankruptcy Judges, a Probate and Family Court Judge, an experienced debtor's attorney with long-standing service as a Chapter 7 Trustee, as well as an experienced divorce attorney, will explain how a divorce is affected by a bankruptcy case and vice versa.

They will address many topics of interest to divorce practitioners, including the different types of bankruptcy cases, how a pending or prospective bankruptcy case affects divorce, how the automatic stay affects a divorce, how relief from stay is obtained and under what circumstances, what is property of a bankruptcy estate and how it is determined, the scope of the bankruptcy discharge, and those domestic support debts which are and are not excepted from discharge.

They will also address many divorce-law topics of interest to bankruptcy practitioners, including those domestic support obligations which are not subject to the automatic stay and discharge, how chapter 11 and 13 reorganization plans may treat domestic support, obligations, the requirements for filing proofs of claim, actual and potential conflicts of interest that arise when bankruptcy debtors are in divorce proceedings, and strategies for timing of a bankruptcy case affected by divorce. Moreover, the panelists will offer procedural guidelines and practice pointers for accomplishing your client's goals in a bankruptcy case.

Registrants will also receive the American Bankruptcy Institute's publication "When Worlds Collide: Bankruptcy and its Impact on Domestic Relations and Family Law" (4th Edition).